Mar 15, 2011 5:30pm PDT
they are really diminishing, that's why they're calling on us. >> couric: james, there have been some questions about these reactors and specifically their design. what can you tell us about that? >> well, there have been some questions that have been raised for a while about the integrity of their containment vessels. but i think there's actually a bigger safety issue here. i think the question that's raised, both in japan and in the whole of the rest of the world, is whether the so-called design basis for reactors is sufficient. have we correctly predicted the size of natural disasters or man made disasters to which they might be subject? >> couric: what about the 140,000 people who have been told to stay inside and not evacuate? what are the health risks to them? >> well, right now with the numbers that we have, those numbers are not good. i mean, it's not good to be in that area. but being inside really does cut down the exposure significantly. it's a good policy that they're telling them. >> couric: all right. james acton and cham dallas, gentlemen, thank you both. >> thank you.
Mar 16, 2011 7:00pm EDT
, we found out just this morning that the united states has offered the use of a high-tech drone to fly over this troubled site to take detailed pictures of what's going on inside. this is actually a spy drone which means it's equippe equipph infrared equipment which can look down and look inside and find out exactly where the hoddest spots are. >> couric: we know so far wind has been blowing in a direction pushing the radiation particles from the reactor out to sea. could that weather pattern be changing in any way? >> reporter: yeah, we've been really, really lucky. the predominant wind have been wist to east, blowing whatever atomic particles out to to sea. there are some weather models right now that are saying that could shift in the next couple of days with a predominant north to south wind, and if that happens, and if there's a significant release of radioactive material, it would head right toward tokyo. >> couric: harry smith in tokyo, thank you, harry. james acton is an nuclear safety expert with the carnegie endowment. james what, is the biggest caws for concern at this point